A Reminder of How Hard We Have to Fight to Keep our Democracy
My husband Archie was in Washington, D.C. this past week to keep me company while the U.S. Senate worked over New Year’s. As I was driving him to the airport on Tuesday, he expressed concern about what might happen on Wednesday when Congress would vote to confirm the electoral college results that would make Joe Biden our next President. Congress was scheduled to meet in joint session at virtually the same time President Trump – near the White House – was inciting thousands of his supporters to continue to attack those election results.
I said “Archie, don’t worry, the United States Capitol must be one of the most safe places in the whole world.” But less than 24 hours later, I was literally running down the hallways of the Capitol with my colleagues to try to get away from a violent mob of people that had breached the Capitol and were just outside the Senate chamber.
A Strike At Our Core Principles
Wednesday’s attacks on the U.S. Capitol and federal buildings strike at the core principle of our democracy, that the people decide who represents them. The seditionists were incited by the most destructive and anti-democratic President in our history. For too long, some political leaders, especially the President, have been using their power and position to fuel distrust in our elections with no evidence and no purpose other than to advance their own personal political power. It’s despicable and runs counter to our oath of office, to protect the United States from all enemies foreign and domestic.
A President who incites his supporters to violently attack their own government is a clear and present danger to our democracy. President Trump should be removed from office immediately, either through the 25th amendment or impeachment.
Further, those who laid siege to the Capitol must be brought to justice, and the lawmakers who collaborated with President Trump in his dangerous yet futile attempt to overturn the election also bear responsibility for what happened. Finally, we need answers and accountability for yesterday’s security failures.
Democracy Prevailed: Restoring Faith in Our Fundamental Democratic Values
We will get through these dark days. I truly believe our democracy is resilient and can withstand this desperate and failed coup attempt. But it’s a reminder of how hard we have to fight for our core principles: that no one is above the law, and that in a democracy the people decide.
Last night, democracy prevailed: I returned to the Senate, and the Congress certified that Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be our next President and Vice President. They will take office on January 20, because the voters of this country chose them to lead us through this challenging chapter in our history. I am committed to working to restore and strengthen our shared faith in our fundamental democratic values.